Domestic & Family Abuse

Resources To Help Individuals And Churches Respond To Domestic Violence.

The Anglican Diocese of Sydney takes matters of domestic abuse very seriously. It is addressed through the Diocesan Domestic Abuse Policy (see below), and in the Safe Ministry Training courses we run.

We now have an online training course to better equip ministry teams to recognise and respond to domestic abuse in the context of our churches and associated ministries.

Anglicare has produced this tip sheet  for use by churches in the time of heightened risk of domestic abuse during the COVID-19 crisis, as well as this information sheet that has more general information on COVID-19 and domestic violence.

At its 2018 meeting, Synod approved the Sydney Anglican Policy on Responding to Domestic Abuse.
The policy and related documents can be accessed below.
Please note: Organisations outside the Anglican Diocese of Sydney wishing to use this policy or related resources, please contact the ODSM first.

A domestic abuse flowchart
A simple guide to what action should be taken when a person discloses domestic abuse. Excellent resource for church staff and ministry leaders.
Domestic Abuse Flowchart
Domestic Abuse flowchart – Chinese version 中文

In August 2015, Southern Cross published a cover story about domestic violence in the lives of church members
‘Victim To Their Charms’ Domestic Violence – Southern Cross Aug 2015

Part of the above article but useful as a standalone resource is Nicky Lock’sHow To Respond‘ list of action and advice when we experience domestic violence in our lives or the lives of those around us:
Domestic Violence -How To Respond

Before it starts
A four week youth program that focuses on building healthy relationships and preventing domestic abuse.
Created by Anglicare and Youthworks.
More information

Print Resources for use in your church

A3 posters for display in public areas such as church hall or meeting rooms: these promote general awareness of domestic abuse and where to seek help.
Domestic Abuse A3 poster

A4 posters with more detail about domestic abuse: these are suitable for display in quieter areas, such as women and men’s restrooms, or smaller meeting rooms where someone can take time to read the information.
Domestic Abuse A4 poster

“Use and Misuse of Scripture” booklet: this booklet presents the work of the doctrine commission on passages of scripture that have often been used to justify abuse, and how to rightly understand them. It may be a helpful discussion starter for home groups. It is a particularly helpful resource for those who currently are or have in the past experienced abuse, to remind them the bible does not justify abuse.
Domestic abuse – Use and misuse of scripture – booklet

DL flyers: (one third of an A4 page, double-sided) these give more information on what domestic abuse is, and how to find help for those experiencing abuse, supporting someone else who is experiencing abuse, or someone wanting help to change their own behaviour. These flyers are suitable for public display, and for specific handouts when responding pastorally to domestic abuse situations.
These print three flyers on an A4 page (double-sided), which can be cut to make individual flyers.
Domestic Abuse DL Information Brochure

Promotional Material

An image suitable to insert into a PowerPoint (or similar) presentations to promote the website and awareness of the printed materials.

Anglicare Domestic Violence Adviser – 0438 826 556 (business hours)
Advice to clergy and lay ministers in the Anglican Diocese of Sydney especially for domestic abuse in a church-related setting.

1800 Respect
Confidential information, counselling and support service
Open 24 hours to support people impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence and abuse.
Web site: 1800 Respect

1800 Respect & Women with disabilities Australia  – ‘Sunny’ App
Women with disability have improved access to violence information and support with this smartphone app. Available for Android and iOS devices, search for it in your app store.

These links are provided for your reading interest and do not necessarily reflect the views of the ODSM or the Anglican Diocese of Sydney.

An ABC News story from February 2019

An ABC report by Julia Baird and Hayley Gleeson from October 2018

Three articles by Erica Hamence posted on
Part 1: Do theological debates around headship and submission add to or obscure safety? 
Part 2: What is your church’s culture of power? 
Part 3: Why don’t we listen to victims?

Two articles from Case Quarterly (courtesy of New College, UNSW)
R. Isaacs ‘Facing domestic violence.’ Case Quarterly, Vol. 49, 2017
R. Isaacs ‘Responding to Domestic Violence: Biblical reflections.’ Case Quarterly, Vol. 52, 2018  (pdf)

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